Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Visiting a book club

Last night, I drove to the Cary Public Library to be the guest speaker at the Strangers in a Strange Book Club meeting. The good folks there had chosen to read One Jump Ahead and had planned to discuss it. When Dan Brooks, a librarian there and a member of the club, emailed me about that choice, I was so tickled that I offered to come and chat with them after the meeting, if they were interested in having me. As it turned out, they invited me to attend the entire meeting.

I had a swell time. I can't speak for them, of course, but they seemed to have a good time, too. All dozen or so (I didn't count, because we started talking the moment I sat) members had read the book (or in a few cases were well into it). Dan kicked off the meeting with a question, and from there the conversation ran fast and furious for almost twenty minutes longer than the scheduled hour. We discussed everything from details of the book (and other books of mine) to my writing process to where the rest of the series would take us. Their questions and comments were always intelligent and thoughtful, and they had clearly considered many aspects of the novel.

I answered every question except those on the series' future. Though the members offered many good guesses and ideas about what would happen in the books to come, as is my policy I never answered anything about any work still in progress. I know that can be annoying, but everyone took my refusal in good spirits and returned to the many questions I would answer.

After the meeting ended, I signed a few books, chatted with a several more folks, and then took off. I find libraries to be comforting places, and it's even more comforting to know that people all over the place are reading books and getting together to discuss them. That the book was one of mine was icing on the cake.


Dan said...

Thanks Mark - we loved having you join us! I heard many comments afterward about how great it was to hear your stories and get some of the behind the scenes information about the books and your writing. (And, on another note, I gave your blog a bit of shout out over on John Scalzi's blog today:

Mark said...

Thanks, Dan.

J. Griffin Barber said...

Sounds very cool, very intimate.


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